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DARTMOOR & ITS BORDERS,
226, HIGH STREET.
The following Sketches are, for the most part, re. printed from the Devon Weekly Times, in which journal they appeared from time to time. If their perusal, in this collected form, should lead the reader to follow the footsteps of the writer, and enjoy, as he did, the many lovely scenes of his native county, which he has endeavoured, most inadequately, to pourtray, his object will be fully attained.
Devon Weekly Times Office, High-street,
Exeter, August, 1869.
DARTMOOR AND ITS BORDERS.
To the majority of English people Dartmoor is a sealed country, nor is it much known by many who live near its mountainous heights, and picturesque borders. In former times there was some excuse for this, as access to the Moor was difficult and costly. But now the railway penetrates into its borders; and the tourist, from distant parts of the kingdom, may roach Moreton, Chagford, Okehampton, Tavistock, and other moorland towns, after a day's journey by rail. The “Forest of Dartmoor,” as it was wont to be called, extends twenty miles from east to west; twenty-two miles from north to south ; and contains more than 130,000 acres of land, the greater part of which cannot be cultivated with much profit. The difficulty of “farming the Moor" is indicated by the favourite expression of the Moormen: “If thee soratches my back thee shall pay vor et.” Heights, crowned with granite tors; noble downs, covered with scanty herbage—their sides rugged with huge granite boulders, and bright with golden gorge and purple heather, in Summer and Autumn; treacherous bogs here and there, where the silken cotton grass flourishes in abundance ; and numerous rivers and streams, teeming with delicious trout-these
some of the main, natural charaoteristios of Dartmoor. The atmospheric effects, as seen from the breezy hills, are sometimes very beautiful and remarkable. A sunset in Summer and Autumn is a gorgeous and imposing sight. The solitude and wildness of the Moor, in many parts, is most impressive. The wind, dallying with the rushes and heather, or sweeping over the tors; the musio of the streams,